ID Cards For Illegal Immigrants?

In the absence of immigration reform, advocates of the McCain-Kennedy bill from this summer warned us, states and localities would start responding with their own patchwork of oddball legislation. Some opponents of the reform bill welcomed the idea, but probably won’t delight in this development from New Haven, Connecticut:

This city is becoming the first in the nation to offer identification cards to illegal immigrants, trying to bring them out of the shadows even as many municipalities crack down on them.
Beginning Tuesday, New Haven will offer the ID cards to all of its 125,000 residents, including some 10,000 to 12,000 illegal immigrants.
The cards will allow immigrants to open bank accounts and use other services that may be unavailable without driver’s licenses or state-issued IDs. If they can open bank accounts, immigrants will be less likely to carry large amounts of cash, a practice that makes them easy targets for robbers.
City officials say the cards will also encourage immigrants who are crime victims or witnesses to cooperate with police.

I’m torn on this idea. First, most if not all of the legal residents of New Haven would probably opt for a state-issued ID card, which would have more legitimacy, if not a driver’s license. The only people who would likely apply for this card would be those who are here illegally — which would make it very easy to find them later.
That’s not why New Haven created the card, of course. They claim it’s so that illegal immigrants don’t have to carry large amounts of cash, and so that they can cooperate with the police on criminal investigations. The latter makes little sense. Illegals don’t cooperate with law enforcement because they’re here illegally, not because they lack identification. This ID would reinforce their illegality, and if the police decided to cooperate with immigration officials, it would flag them immediately to get ICE involved.
And if the immigrants work so hard for such little pay, where do they get the large amounts of cash that New Haven deems so dangerous?
On the other hand, it’s hard to credit the critics of the plan on their major objection. They claim that the ID card will create a demand for more illegal immigrants. That also makes little sense, because illegals don’t come to the US because of a lack of picture IDs in their home country. They’re here for the work .. if we’re lucky.
However, it seems rather strange to have a government program that provides legitimacy to those who remain in violation of federal law. Had a normalization program been passed, then New Haven’s city ID would have been superceded by a federal immigration ID anyway. This looks like a publicity stunt by Mayor John DeStefano and the city council to get their names in the papers around the country. Apparently, they don’t care if they look as goofy as DeStefano’s picture in the process.

24 thoughts on “ID Cards For Illegal Immigrants?”

  1. Of course it’s liberal grandstanding. Several ‘progressive’ communities on the left coast also offer ‘sanctuary’. That does not translate to housing…..Joe Average can’t even afford a home in these areas. I’d love to be as rich as George Soros. I’d buy homes in Brentwood, Marin County and West Hollywood and rent them out to illegals. Once these communities are impacted there would be a sudden change in attitude.

  2. I look forward to watching this one play out.
    Captain didn’t include in his post another item in the story–the North Carolina-based legal immigration lobby that is passing out fliers in 40 states advising illegals to go quickly with their families to—NEW HAVEN, CT.
    If it’s illegals they want, it’s illegals they’ll get.
    When the liberal do-gooders are absolutely overrun with illegals in 6 months then we will see how strong their convictions are.

  3. I am for any kind of program that will begin to document and identify who is in this country, if illegals are willing to step forward and get an ID card, great.

  4. Maybe they can confiscate more private property and build housing for those “living in the shadows”.
    New Haven may also consider changing its name to Starnsville.

  5. It will be interesting to see what kind of ‘documentation’ will be required in order to get one of these ID cards. Since everyone is encouraged to get one, I assume the requirements will be the same. The identity thieves are going to have a field day. I hope New Haven has a lot of insurance. Or did the city officials even think that far ahead?

  6. You’re torn over this???
    This is a laughable, liberal stunt which fits perfectly with Jorge W. Bush and his “No Illegal Alien Left Behind” obsession.
    Illegal aliens are CRIMINALS. All of them, not some, ALL. They are all using fake ID’s, stolen SS#’s, fake driver licenses, income tax evasion, shall I continue?
    Nothing will improve until the law is enforced against all people instead of certain ethnic groups getting carte blanche to flaunt the law, get it amigo?
    Enforce the law, build a double layer fence and start deportation on a wide scale. Then our amigos to the south will understand that we’re a nation and want to remain a nation, just like they want to keep their nation of Mexico.

  7. I hope they can see it in their hearts to offer special ID cards for drug dealers too. They also carry large sums of cash and don’t cooperate with law enforcement.

  8. I wonder what Joe Lieberman will have to say about this…
    BTW, New Haven still has some great Italian restaurants. World-class fried calamari for sure!

  9. Why should anyone on the right give a horse’s patooty about immigration. The GOP sat on its hands, but oh they were breaking with the President so boldly, didn’t do anything that might have aligned the Dear Leader with Sen. Kennedy, and blew the last chance to show some real spine and fashion a real immigration bill their constituencies really wanted. BUT NO, through abject political expediency they boldly waited for the democrats to step up and try to deliver their version and then so pedantically rejected it as unworthy and not the will of the people. Cowards, plain and simple, loyal cowards. There is really no other way to describe blowing a 6 year opportunity to prove the conservative movement worthy of something other than pipe dreams of domestic policy reform and fiscal restraint. No one to blame but your GOP leaders. Your emperor truly had no clothes in this case and you all just sat back and watched his ass as it passed you by with all of your so called Conservative leaders covering it for him.

  10. I agree with Pineapple on the Italian restaurants in New Haven … they rival that of what is on “the Hill” in St. Louis.

  11. Shouldn’t we build some nice facilities at some of our illegal immigrant border crossing spots where they could rest up, fill up, shower down, and now, pick up their illegal immigrant ID?

  12. so much for RepubliConjobs championing small regional government over FEDERAL Government control.
    Vee transformation is Komplete Reichbuglicon Party is now the polar opposite of Goldwater Republicans.
    They don’t give a crap about State’s Rights nor municiple self determination. They just want one huge Police State where the Feds protect them from the buggy-terrists and the freedo banditos.
    Hell no wonder the Dems will eat your arses in 2008 – the Goldwaterites have more in common with the Dems than they do you Neoconjobs.
    that includes you Captain – the one championing Federal control over the people of New Haven!
    Big Government Reichbuglicons – lovely.
    what hypocrisy!
    want small government and Liberty?
    vote Democrat in 2008!

  13. Gaffo,
    Put down the bong pipe. Immigration and border control have always been under federal jurisdiction, not that of states or cities. No federalist has ever suggested otherwise.
    Try to save the Nazi references for your high-school civics class, when you get around to taking it. And check with your Mom to see if you can stay on the Internet this late at night.

  14. can’t have it both ways Captain.
    Fly-man is right.
    Your side never offered up a comprehensive bill for a solution to the immigration problem. only shot one down instead. now a local gov. is doing it for you and you are crying about it!!
    it is not (or at least it should not) local law enforcements job to be imigration agents.
    as for civics – they stopped offering that as a course 30 yrs ago. that is why so many on this site have no respect for our Bill of Rights and want to turn America into the USSA.

  15. Gaffe-o,
    I have no doubt that you haven’t seen a civics course, but my son had one six years ago. It was a requirement to graduate from high school.
    If you had read my post, I acknowledged that no immigration bill had been forthcoming from Congress; that was my entire first paragraph. (I’ve made that point a number of times on this blog.) Not only that, but I never argued that the cards are illegal, only monumentally stupid, and completely useless.
    I’m not sure how one enforces immigration law without having the cooperation of the local police. Otherwise, we’d have to nationalize the police forces in every community. Believe it or not, local police do notify federal authorities when federal crimes are committed on a regular basis for almost every other class of crime except immigration. Or perhaps you think the FBI gets notified of bank robberies and kidnappings by watching the local news?
    You have a reading comprehension problem, as well as a maturity issue. Perhaps you should spend some time working on both. Until then, conside the wisdom of the proverb which instructs, “It is better to keep one’s mouth shut and be thought a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.”

  16. Gabbo said
    Komplete Reichbuglicon
    Big Government Reichbuglicons
    LOL! For a leftist who accuses Bush of being a “Nazi”, your fascination with the Hitler culture shows where you’re coming from.
    I’m sure on your world, Bush’s grandfather gassed the Jews as well…

  17. TUES JULY 24 The Surprising Racist Origin of the Reconquista Hystaria

    Noting cute poodle or kitty related today. Rumsfeld was doing his usual running around barking at the thunder then realized …

  18. “I’m sure on your world, Bush’s grandfather gassed the Jews as well..”
    Prescott the Nazi lover businessman?
    But Carl Roverer’s Grandaddy sure knew how to design the Aushwitz ovens, why don’t you go ask Carl about his grandpabby – I’m sure he’d be happy to tell you all about it Bub.

  19. Well, this thread has deteriorated quickly, but before it passes into the dustbin of the Internet, one point:
    ID cards for illegals (except of course to legitimize them, which is the intention) is just backwards. American citizens and legal immigrants need counterfeit-proof ID cards. Then when an illegal alien without one tries to get a job, or goes to the hospital, or to a school, he gets booted out, quickly.
    /Mr Lynn

  20. Gaffe-O,
    Rove’s family are Norwegian, not German, and were on the other side of World War II. Obviously, you have applied your keen intellect to history as well as civics.

  21. I heard on Fox News this morning that the mayor of New Haven sits on the board of directors of a bank that wants to open a branch in New Haven. Fox also said that this bank caters to account to illegal aliens and other fringe groups. This may explain the emphasis on the ability to open a bank account with the new I.Ds.

  22. Perhaps something less politically nefarious is actually behind this push for ID cards for illegals aliens.

    What struck me as the most incongruous thing in the whole press item was the idea of ilegals opening bank accounts. Why would they take part in an ID card system that would open them to possible taxation and easier deportation? Could it simply be that the banking industry wants a slice of the pie in the money transfer sector?

    Illegals wire much of their earnings back to Mexico. Western Union and other companies get a commission on each of these transactions. Are the supposed benefits to the illegal population listed in this story just a smoke screen so the banks can move into this profitable revenue stream?

Comments are closed.